After complaining about Honey not indicating her need to busy another puppy raiser suggested we bell train Honey. In theory, you hang a bell near the door and teach the dog to ring the bell when s/he needs to go out. We have huge sleigh bells we decorate with at Christmas so we thought we would give it a try. At first we would ring the bell and then take Honey out to busy. After a few days Honey was ringing the bell to go outside (not to mention all the angels she was helping get their wings!). I was a little worried that each time Honey heard a bell she would need to busy but my fear was unwarranted. Oddly enough, I am the one responding the bells as follows:
1) hear bell ring
2) immediately stop doing what ever I was doing
3) rush to put on shoes
4) put on coat
5) grab a leash
6) run to door
Sounds great, right? Not really. Honey has taken to sleeping at the back door where the bells are located. Sometimes when getting ready to settle down she accidently rings the bells. I leap into action completing steps 1-6 in record breaking time to find Honey asleep at the door. Honey hears the commotion, sees me standing there with her leash and fully awakens thinking we are going out to play.
One of three things needs to happen soon:
1) relocate the bells so Honey cannot accidently hit them (but that would then require her to jump to ring them so really not a solution)
2) find Honey a new resting spot
3) stop reacting like one of Pavlov's dogs each time I hear a bell ring
With a lot of my fb puppy raiser friends bringing their dogs IFT this past week, it made me think - I hope in the future I do not cry each time I hear a bell ring.